Finland Civil Registration
Records of births, marriages, and deaths are commonly referred to as vital records because they refer to critical events in a person’s life. Civil registration is the vital records made by the government. Vital records of Finland have traditionally been kept by the church. See the "Church Records" section of this outline for more information.
In 1923 a freedom of religion law was passed. As a result, people who did not have a religious preference were recorded in a civil registry [Siviilirekisteri/Civil registret]. Later, people who belonged to churches other than the state churches were also included in the civil registry.
In 1970 the government’s census records [henkikirjat/mantalslängder] became the basis of a general population register [Väestörekisteri/ Befolkningsregistret] for all people in Finland. This population register also incorporated the information from the earlier civil registry [Siviilirekisteri/Civil registret]. For more information about Finnish censuses, see the "Census Records" section of this outline.
The Väestörekisteri/Befolkningsregistret has local offices on a commune (parish) level. The central office has a computerized register that includes information on individuals nationwide. The central office can help you find living relatives in Finland.
You can contact the office at:
PL 7 (Kellosilta 4)
Telephone: 011-358-9-229 161
Fax: 011-358-9-2291 6795